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Denotation vs. Connotation

questionable

[kwes-chuh-nuh-buh l] /ˈkwɛs tʃə nə bəl/
adjective
1.
of doubtful propriety, honesty, morality, respectability, etc.:
questionable activities; in questionable taste.
2.
open to question or dispute; doubtful or uncertain:
a statement of questionable accuracy.
3.
open to question as to being of the nature or value suggested:
a questionable privilege.
Origin of questionable
1580-1590
1580-90; question + -able
Related forms
questionableness, questionability, noun
questionably, adverb
Synonyms
2. debatable, disputable, controvertible, dubitable, dubious.
Antonyms
1. certain.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for questionable
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She regarded the questionable cattle again; his tone had said much more.

    Cynthia Leonard Merrick
  • Not Najma this questionable companion, but one as dear to Khalid.

    The Book of Khalid Ameen Rihani
  • This was an ingenious explanation, for it helped to release the warrior from a questionable situation.

    Footprints in the Forest Edward Sylvester Ellis
  • "I thought maybe he were a friend," said the stranger, with questionable veracity.

  • I find myself reduced to expedients of a questionable character.

British Dictionary definitions for questionable

questionable

/ˈkwɛstʃənəbəl/
adjective
1.
(esp of a person's morality or honesty) admitting of some doubt; dubious
2.
of disputable value or authority: a questionable text
Derived Forms
questionableness, questionability, noun
questionably, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for questionable
adj.

1580s, "that may be interrogated;" c.1600, "open to dispute, doubtful," from question (v.) + -able. Deprecatory sense of "dubious in character" is attested from 1806. Related: Questionably.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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